Have a holly jolly healthy holiday by UofL Health

Abstaining completely from the foods we enjoy can have some negative side effects, but it is so easy when there is so much good food around to get carried away. Here are a few tips to help keep you stay on track during the holidays:

  • Use smaller plates. By using smaller plates we trick ourselves into eating smaller portions.
  • Have the pie. Just try having a smaller slice.
  • Have the holiday cookie. Notice I said cookie, not the whole tin.
  • Drink water before and during the meal to help fill you up.
  • If you know you can’t ‘have just one,’ try preparing holiday items using lower fat /lower sugar ingredients (bonus: it will be healthier for everyone else too and they probably won’t even know).
  • Eat more slowly. Your body produces a chemical called Leptin that tells you that you have had enough. When you eat quickly you don’t allow time for that chemical to circulate and you can end up overeating.
  • Don’t forget about physical activity. As the temperatures plunge you might be less motivated to do as much outdoors. This combined with an excess of high calorie foods can be a double whammy during the holiday months. Try doing something simple like going for a brisk 10-20 min walk after meals. Not only will you help burn off those pesky calories, but walking after a meal can help with digestion and prevent heartburn, which seems to be much more common around the holidays.

Below are some places to find these and more healthy tips to prevent riding the holiday roller coaster:




Also, click here to see our Thanksgiving infographic.

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Article by:

Susan Wilson, R.D.

Susan Wilson is a registered dietitian with UofL Physicians – Pediatric Gastroenterology. She received her bachelor’s degree in dietetics from the University of Kentucky, and her dietetic practicum rotations through Cedar Crest College in Allentown, Pa. She is currently working on completing her master’s in public health promotion. She has served on the Kentucky Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics board of directors for the past two years. Wilson’s daughter has a nut and peanut allergy. This firsthand knowledge helps her as she works with her patients with food allergies, intolerance or any other condition where a restrictive diet is required. When she has any downtime, she enjoys jogging, working in her garden, and traveling to new places.

All posts by Susan Wilson, R.D.
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